Swear I'm not Paul: 22/02/2009

My blog has moved! Redirecting...

You should be automatically redirected. If not, visit http://www.swearimnotpaul.com and update your bookmarks.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Album News: Neil Young - Fork in the Road

Neil Young - Fork in the Road album cover art

There's finally a release date for the new Neil Young record, Fork in the Road. It's out April 7th, and has the most homemade album cover I've seen in a long time. For some reason though, I like the album art. Then again I love everything Neil does, so I'm bound to like it.

01: When Worlds Collide
02: Fuel Line
03: Just Singing A Song
04: Johnny Magic
05: Cough Up The Bucks
06: Get Behind The Wheel
07: Off The Road
08: Hit The Road
09: Light A Candle
10: Fork In The Road

Video for 'Fork in the Road':

Watch: Lisa Hannigan on The Tonight Show

Lisa Hannigan on Jay Leno's The Tonight Show on 19th of February.

Album News: Dave Matthews Band - Big Whiskey and the Groogrux King

Yes, that's the album title. Big Whiskey and the Groogrux King. It's been delayed until June 2nd now too. Need to work on lyrics. It's evident since Dave twittered this recently:
"still here dancing with the Groo Grux King. We'll be drinking big whiskey while we dance and sing. When I get to the end, I'm gonna end.."

Which is probably the lyric where the album name came from. Or maybe it's a genius lyric and album name. When some semblance of audio actually emerges we can judge better. As for now, here's 'Good Good Time', one of my favourite unreleased tunes:

Oh and check out their new website, where you can freely stream all their live albums:

Blogs What I Like: Tenaka Drifting

Tenaka Drifting

Not only has he released one of the EPs of the Year, but Tenaka aka Ronan has launched a blog.

And it's not the usual band blogs which are self-loving, this one is interesting and talks about what he's listening to as well as the dreaded cracked laptop screen. A great insight into the life of a brilliant upcoming musician.

Check it out here:

Live: The Breeders at Vicar Street

Remember the Pixies? Of course you do. Remember the chick in them? Kim Deal, yeah her. If you haven't heard of her band The Breeders, who've been going for at least 20 years, I have a feeling your only knowledge of the Pixies is at the end of Fight Club. If not, you'll be stoked to hear the Breeders are back in town.

They play Vicar Street in Dublin on May 18. Tickets are €28 and are on sale now.

Watch The Breeders - 'Saints':

Download: Say Hi - Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh

I think I got the correct amount of 'Oh's in the song title anyway. This song is from Say Hi's Oohs and Aahs album, released on Barsuk.

01. Elouise
02. Hallie And Henry
03. Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh
04. November Was White, December Was Grey
05. Dramatic Irony
06. Maurine
07. One, Two ... One
08. Audrey
09. The Stars Just Blink For Us
10. Sallie's Heart Is Stone

Say Hi - 'Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh'

More info (via a cleverly named MySpace):

Thursday, February 26, 2009

News: NME Awards 2009 Results

Any award show that has Best and Worst Dressed awards should never be taken seriously. And the importance of these awards becomes more evident when you consider that last night Oasis took the crown for Best British Band. What is this? Ten years ago. Surely there was somebody else nominated who more exemplifies British music today. Because it's certainly not Oasis.

I'll let you judge for yourself. Here are the results in full.

Best British Band - Oasis
Best International Band - The Killers
Best Solo Act - Pete Doherty
Best New Band - MGMT
Best Live Band - Muse
Best Album - Kings Of Leon, Only By The Night
Best Track - MGMT, Time To Pretend
Best Video - The Last Shadow Puppets, My Mistakes Were Made For You
Best Dance Floor Filler - Dizzee Rascal, Dance Wiv Me
Best DVD - Arctic Monkeys, At The Apollo
Best Band Blog - Oasis
Best Album Artwork - Muse, HAARP
Best Dressed - Alexa Chung
Worst Dressed - Amy Winehouse
Worst Album - Jonas Brothers, A Little Bit Longer
Worst Band - Jonas Brothers
Sexiest Male - Matt Bellamy
Sexiest Female - Hayley Williams
Outstanding Contribution To British Music - Elbow
Godlike Genius Award - The Cure

Review: Various Artists - War Child Heroes

War Child Heroes album cover

Various Artists - War Child Heroes

In the past I've often felt guilty when reviewing charity albums. As they're always for a good cause, and you have the commend each artist for taking part, it's hard to be negative - because in reality, a lot of these albums don't live up to their billing. However, this is far from the case with War Child's Heroes compilation.

Heroes is a small bit different from other covers records, as the artist who performed the original chose which contemporary band or singer to update their tune. This makes sense for David Bowie choosing TV on the Radio and Bruce Springsteen with The Hold Steady, but some of the choices are downright bizarre. Elvis Costello and The Like? Paul McCartney and Duffy? No idea where these came from. But it is good to see Scissor Sisters back. Where have they been?

The album opens with Beck's take on Bob Dylan's 'Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat', a very much inspired choice. I always find covers work best where they're not a cabaret/karaoke performance of the song, but sound like something the artist would write themselves. Here, this sounds very much like a Beck song. Roxy Music and Scissor Sisters is something similar, probably because they have such a distinct sound.

Lily Allen joins up with Mick Jones to perform a version of his band's (The Clash) 'Straight to Hell'. It also sounds like one of her own, except without all the sex and drugs reference. The Clash were one of those straight-laced bands don't you remember? Or do I have them mixed up with someone else?!

The real highlights of the album are Duffy's version of Paul McCartney's 'Live and Let Die' and the Hold Steady taking on Atlantic City'. 'Live and Let Die' works just as good as a soul tune, and really suits her husky voice. She really was deserving of some of those Brit awards. The Hold Steady do a magnificent version of the Bruce Springsteen tune, a bar-band romp that the Boss himself would have been proud of.

Like anything, every song is not going to be brilliant. Estelle's 'Superstition' (originally by Stevie Wonder) is a bit bland, and Peaches brings a confused look to my face every time I hear it. Surely Iggy Pop could have picked someone better. Peaches is very much all style and no substance (a bit like Lady Gaga so).

The record ends with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs doing the Ramones and then Franz Ferdinand's 'Call Me' (a Blondie cover). Both are splendid. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs tune makes me excited for their upcoming album. If it's as good as this cover, it could well be one of the albums of the year.

This record however is really great. It's probably the best charity album I've heard since the Cake Sale, and promises to be volume one in a series. I can't wait for the next instalment.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Album News: Crystal Antlers - Tentacles

Crystal Antlers - Tentacles album cover art

Just had to post this album cover because it looks so great. The album itself, Tentacles, is due out April 7th on Touch and Go.

Thirteen tentacles:
1- Painless Sleep
2- Dust
3- Time Erased
4- Andrew
5- Vapor Trail
6- Tentacles
7- Until the Sun Dies (Part One)
8- Memorized
9- Glacier
10- Foot of the Mountain
11- Your Spears
12- Swollen Sky
13- Several Tongues

More info:

Live: Little Feat at the Academy

"I'll be your Dixie Chicken if you be my Tennessee lamb, and we can walk together, down in Dixieland."

God I love that tune. But they've got loads more classics too. The great news is that Little Feat are returning to Ireland to play the Academy on May 13th of this year.

Tickets are €31.50 and go on sale this Friday (the 27th).

Here's 'Dixie Chicken' from 1977:

Download: Jensen Sportag - Jackie

Jensen Sportag (I assume his name means sporting or something in German) continues his Perfect Strangers series of EPs. The next one up is Jackie, of which I have the title track for download.

The EP comes out March 3rd (next week) on MIDISPORT.

Jensen Sportag - 'Jackie'

A “deluxe edition” Jackie tracklist:

1 – Jackie: The title track is celebratory with a central theme of desire and shifts musically between 3 compositional quotations from pop rock. It is lyrically fashioned after the american girl tribute song. i.e: Oh Sheila, Joanna, Sussudio etc.

2 – Victim: This one has an overtly sexual message with musical references to early electro rap and epic soul.

3 – Cocktease: San Fransisco house and power pop provide setting for this girl gone bad story. i.e: Runaround Sue, Maneater, Girl Gone Bad, etc.

+ Bonus Materials:

4 – Jackie (Jensen’s Arpeggio Mix)
5 – Victim (Live Version)
6 – Cocktease (Jensen’s Cock-Cuts Mix)
7 – Jackie (Justin Kase Remix)
8 – Cocktease (Max Tundra Remix)
9 – Jackie (Sats + Sojourn Remix)

More info:

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Stream: Tinted Windows - Kind of a Girl

Tinted Windows

Remember me mentioning these guys? Tehy could be big. Or else more interesting that Jaoquin's hip-hop album at least. They feature James Iha from Smashing Pumpkins and Taylor Hanson, from well, Hanson.

You can stream one of their songs, 'Kind of a Girl' here:

I must admit, it's a good song.

Download: Harlam Shakes - Strictly Game

Harlam Shakes - Technicolor Health

I love harmonies. I loved the harmonies at I am Not Lefthanded in Whelan's last night (expect a review soon). Brooklyn's Harlam Shakes are a band with some great harmonies. Their debut album is due next month (March 24th), and will be called Technicolor Health. They release an EP, Burning Birthdays, in 2007 to much acclaim, and this promises to build on that.

Harlam Shakes - 'Strictly Game'

Technicolor Health Tracklisting:
01. Nothing But Change Part II
02. Strictly Game
03. TFO
04. Niagara Falls
05. Sunlight
06. Unhurried Hearts (Passaic Pastoral)
07. Winter Water
08. Natural Man
09. Radio Orlando
10. Technicolor Health

More info:

Live: Keane, Lily Allen and more at Oxegen 2009

More acts announced for Oxegen 2009 (and T in the Park 2009). They are Keane and Lily Allen, unfortunately not together, but that would be interesting. In my opinion Keane are miles better than the Killers, but that's not saying all that much!

Others added are The Mars Volta, Digitalism, The Specials, Paolo Nutini, Crookers, Miss Kittin, Swedish House Mafia and our own home favourite Wallis Bird.

Setlist: The Killers, Odyssey Arena, Belfast, 21 February 2009

Neat set from the band who played the O2 in Dublin the following night and are due to return to headline Oxegen 2009.

Losing Touch
Somebody Told Me
Smile Like You Mean It
This Is Your Life
Joy Ride
I Can’t Stay
For Reasons Unknown
Neon Tiger
Sam’s Town
Read My Mind
Mr Brightside
All These Things That I’ve Done
A Dustland Fairytale
Jenny Was a Friend of Mine
When You Were Young

Closer 'When You Were Young':

Monday, February 23, 2009

Check this out: Twistories

By now you're fed up hearing about twitter. But if you enjoy using it, I'd recomment you follow @twistories, my new account where I aim to tell a short story over the course of a working week, with one part each day.

The first part of the first story 'The Black Friar' has been posted. Please lete me know what you think of the concept or even what you think of the story so far.

More here:


Live: A Camp at the Academy

Cardigan's spin-off (kind of like Fraiser, not Joey) A Camp are set to play Dublin's Academy on April 29th.

Nina Persson's new band released their second album Colonia recenlty, and it was a vast improvement on A Camp's first record.

Tickets are cheap enough at €16 and are on sale now.

TV Review: Late Late Eurovision Song for Ireland Special 2009

I was offline live-blogging while watching the special edition of the Late Late Show on Friday night. So like those award ceremonies which are delayed in case someone swears profusely, becomes libellous or pulls Michael Jackson's nose off, this is essentially a delayed broadcast.

Here is what I typed:

Song 1 - Some girlband trio, with Nadine Coyle's sister in it. 'Flying' was the tune, but nothing new here. It's exactly what you'd expect from an Irish group trying to be edgy for the Eurovision.

Song 2 - rubbish Europop by a mini Amanda Brunker, Sarah Jane (maybe Laura Jane) Hudson 'Out of Control'.

Song 3 - Lee Bradshaw dismal ballad 'So What', was in RTÉ's The Restaurant, written by two guys who had a song in Song for Ireland a few years back but lost to the now legendary Gary O'Shaugnessy. I remember his name, but not the song he entered. That tells you everything. Marty pointed out that it was always a mid-tempo ballad that won it for us before. But Marty, it's years since we've won. Or even come close to winning. Something with a little more spunk is needed.

Song 4 - Johnny Brady 'Amazing'. Anything but. A flamenco feel, but far from Buena Vista Social Club. The best song so far, but not one I'd ever listen to outside of a Eurovision environment. I'd say the very repetitive chorus may appeal though.

Song 5 - Riga, Latvia this time. Close to Russia, but not Eastern Europe as the song write claims. There's no way Christina's 'I Wish I Could Pretend' could win. Not with the Irish people complaining about foreigners taking their jobs. And their beloved Eurovision entry too? Not a chance.

Song 6 - Sinead Mulvey and Black Daisy 'Et cetera' Back story about how they exchanged lyrics and music online, as well as finding the singer through MySpace. Postal Service it is not. All girl band, so has a certain charm. But God, her trousers were horrendous. The music was decent enough. Typical girlband power-pop.

No recap before the phone numbers until after the ad break. Which was a huge own goal. But probably helped song 6 win. They did recap after the ads, but most had probably voted at that stage.

The travesty of the six songs chosen was further evidenced by having Charlie McGettigan and Paul Harrington with 'Rock and Roll Kids' on after. There's a song that's still brilliant. With or without the Eurovision. A song needs to be able to stand on its own.

Oh, and just for the sake of it, here's the winner:

Irish Blog Awards 2009: Best Music Blog

Congrats once again to nialler9 who is becoming the perennial winner at these award shows. The Tom Hanks of the Music Blogging world maybe?

Check out his multi-award winning blog here:

Also, have a look at all the award intro videos including some well-known Irish figures on Darragh Doyle's blog here:
It makes the Oscars look bland and boring!

Full list of winners: